Miruna Codeanu

There should be no “Cheap” by Apple

In Uncategorized on June 3, 2014 at 5:55 am

Yesterday Apple held an event which will make Apple subject of the day for most business magazines today. They announced iOS and OS X updates introducing new services. Top news: Siri now has +22 languages, you can now pair your iPhone with your smart home devices, iCloud also got a serious makeover to target its biggest competitor,  Dropbox. Tim Cook made a serious affirmation, summarized as: we are dominating the mobile market.  Of course, the Apple – Android/Samsung debate is a neverending redundant one so I will not even begin to discuss it. There’s something else we need to talk about: the widespread idea that Apple should release low cost hardware. I’ve said it before, guys you’re wrong.

Apple should not, under any circumstances release low cost hardware. Not Apple. I’ve said it before, Apple shouldn’t go to China, Apple shouldn’t sell cheap smartphones and I was kind of happy to see Apple is becoming a lifestyle company. Take Apple as the Jimmy Choos of technology, as a friend of mine once said, and think of cheap Choos. There’s no such thing as cheap Jimmy Choos. You know why Apple imported staff from Burberry? Because they need it, a fashion company is the closest to what Apple is becoming. Apple, as we know it, with the history this brand holds, can only become closer to “statement” tech. You might see Jimmy Choo collaborating with H&M to launch a few items for a season, but that will be it. You might see Jimmy Choo selling cheaper shoes under another label, but not as cheap Jimmy Choos.

Speaking about the fashion industry, let’s talk about H&M and COS. H&M is the epitome of industrialized, mainstream, cheap fashion, the inventor of fast fashion. However, in 2007 H&M launched another brand: COS, an up-market brand positioned higher than H&M. Let’s take the cosmetics industry. L’Oreal dominates the market. With a huge portfolio of brands, we can all agree, L’Oreal is the leader. L’Oreal’s comprises from consumer goods to upper market products that most consumers aren’t even aware they belong to L’Oreal. Eg: did you know that Lancome belongs to L’Oreal?  Well it does, but this group holds numerous brands that you do not even suspect of belonging to the giant, and you will not consider buying an expensive Garnier or finding Lancome near Garnier.

Let’s go to back to Apple right now. Apple can learn a few things both from the fashion and cosmetics industry. Should they want to manufacture low cost hardware, they shouldn’t do it as Apple. There’s no such thing as a brand for everybody. A cheap iPhone will still be an iPhone. Don’t manufacture a cheap iPhone. Make a whole new company that manufactures cheap hardware. It can still be “by Apple”, but it won’t be Apple. Make a whole new brand to target buyers who want a cheap smartphone. Make sure you don’t upset your fanboys/girls by manufacturing a cheap piece of hardware. Make sure you don’t ruin the brand you’ve built with a cheap look. Build another brand that you can afford playing with.

 

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